Oct 6, 2011 – The Libyan National Transitional Council will be held accountable for its “blind and unjustified” reprisals on Nigerians, Foreign Affairs Minister, Olugbenga Ashiru, said on Wednesday.
Ashiru spoke at a meeting with federal lawmakers, to evaluate the security and safety of Nigerians in the crisis-ridden North African nation.
Nigerian immigrants have been trapped in the months of restiveness in that ousted sit-tight ruler, Muammar Ghadaffi, and killed thousands.
Black migrant workers have been accused of fighting in defence of Ghadaffi, and have been targets of reprisal since Ghadaffi’s fall.
Many Nigerians have been reportedly killed or stranded in their attempt to leave the country.
The minister’s remarks to the House Foreign Affairs committee were some of the most detailed since reports of the condition of Nigerians in Libya stirred public concern.
Nigeria was one of the first African nations to recognise the NTC.
Ashiru said the NTC, which is waging a final assault to assume a complete control of the country from the long standing dictator, understands it will be responsible for unwarranted attacks on Nigerians and other nationals.
“Securing the safety and welfare of migrant workers, especially Nigerians and other Africans, who seemed to have been the object of unjustified and blind reprisals in the wake of the unrests in Libya, will be our immediate and urgent concern,” he told the lawmakers
“We have made ourselves clear on this matter in no uncertain terms to the NTC, and we shall hold them accountable where it is established that such human rights violations have indeed taken place under their watch, or that they did little or nothing to stem these reprehensible acts.”
He however added that for Nigerians arrested under unclear circumstances, the NTC have assured to undertake proper screening to determine their pasts. Daily Times